Upcoming Colloquium

Topological Tuning of DNA-Based Active Matter
Dr. Rae Robertson-Anderson, University of San Diego

April 22, 2024
11:00am in LA4-120

Rae Robertson-Anderson


Incorporating ring polymers into entangled polymer solutions can dramatically alter their response to stresses and strain. Biopolymer networks can also be pushed out of equilibrium by incorporating motors and enzymes that actively restructure the macromolecules to induce autonomous time-varying properties. Our lab combines these two paradigms by using enzymes that perform topological operations on ring DNA to endow entangled DNA solutions and composites with active 'living' properties. We use a robust characterization platform to elucidate the time-varying dynamics and mechanics of our engineered 'topologically-active' complex fluids across orders of spatiotemporal scales. Specifically, we couple particle-tracking and differential dynamic microscopy with optical tweezers microrheology and bulk rheology to reveal key discoveries, including viscous thickening and gated thinning of topologically-active DNA solutions and discrete cooperative state-switching of topologically-active DNA-dextran composites.

digestion time of DNA-based active matter

The Colloquium is a unique opportunity for students to learn about new developments in physics and what physicists do after they graduate. Hosted by the Physics and Astronomy Department at California State University, Long Beach, the weekly meetings invite guests from universities, research laboratories, and industry to present and discuss current topics in physics. All students are encouraged to attend for a well-rounded experience and training in physics.

Colloquium Coordinator

For information and suggestions about the colloquium please contact the colloquium coordinator:

Dr. Alex Klotz


The following is the schedule for Spring 2024.

Upcoming Colloquia
DateTitleSpeaker and Affiliation
April 22, 2024Topological Tuning of DNA-Based Active MatterDr. Rae Robertson-Anderson, University of San Diego
April 29, 2024(topic: particle physics)Juan Pedro Ochoa-Ricoux, UC Irvine
May 6, 2024End of Semester PresentationsStudents, CSU Long Beach

Previous Colloquia

Previous Colloquia from This Semester
DateTitleSpeaker and Affiliation
April 15, 2024Gravitational Wave Sources at the Heart of GalaxiesDr. Smadar Naoz, UCLA
April 8, 2024Energy: The True Final Frontier (Distinguished Lecture in Physics)Dr. Ramamoorthy Ramesh, Rice University
April 8, 2024Vortices, Skyrmions and Cycloids: A New Era in FerroelectricsDr. Ramamoorthy Ramesh, Rice University
March 27, 2024Gravitational Waves from f-modes as a Tool to Probe the Neutron Star InteriorDr. Debarati Chatterjee, Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics
March 25, 2024Exploring Topological Phase Transitions and Dynamic Strain Engineering in Quantum MaterialsDr. Luis A. Jauregui, UC Irvine
March 18, 2024DNA LiquidsDr. Omar Saleh, UC Santa Barbara
March 11, 2024The Gravity Tunnel in a Non-Uniform EarthDr. Alex Klotz, CSU Long Beach
February 26, 2024A City on Mars: Can We Settle Space, Should We Settle Space, and Have We Really Thought This Through?Zach Weinersmith, illustrator and writer for Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal
February 19, 2024Driving Quantum Matter to ExtremesDr. Sarah Grefe, CSU Long Beach
February 12, 2024Solar System Archaelogy: Multi-disciplinary Approaches to Understanding Planetary System Formation and Environmental ScienceDr. Gerardo Dominguez, CSU San Marcos
February 5, 2024Assembly, Disassembly, and Mechanics of Entropic ColloidosomesDr. Zvonimir Dogic, UC Santa Barbara
January 29, 2024What Quantum Materials Can Reveal When Interrogated with Photoemission and Electronic Transport ProbesDr. Claudia Ojeda-Aristizaba, CSU Long Beach

The Colloquium Archive has the Colloquia from previous semesters.


We acknowledge with gratitude donations and support from the following present sponsors:

  • H.E. and H.B. Miller and Family Endowment
  • Benjamin Carter
  • American Physical Society
  • Anonymous

We also acknowledge with gratitude our past donors: The Forty-Niner Shops, Inc., The Northrop Grumman Foundation, Sandra Dana, Anonymous.

If you wish to support the Colloquium, please contact the colloquium coordinator or the department chair. Thank you!